Thursday, May 15, 2014

Vegetable and Fish Tempura with Miso Dressing

Tempura was introduced to the Japanese during the sixteenth century by Portuguese Jesuit missionaries along with the deep-frying technique. 
Since Goa was a Portuguese colony in India, the Portuguese could have picked up the batter technique used in making pakoras, an Indian savory fritters from the Indians. 

To make a light and airy tempura batter I used very cold white beer (or sparking water) with low gluten flour, cake flour. Along with a cold beer, I used a bowl inside a larger bowl  of ice to mix the batter. Whisk the batter for just a few seconds to combine, retaining the lumps in the tempura batter. This produces a crispy and airy texture. 
The best way to enjoy tempura is immediately after frying, sprinkled with sea salt and served with tentsuyu which is made of bonito-based stock (dashi), soy sauce and mirin. Grated daikon, which helps to digest oily foods, is often added to the sauce.

For a variation I made a miso dressing to serve with the tempura. 

When frying tempura, scoop out between batches of tempura the crunchy bits of fried flour-batter known as tenkasu to add to your noodle soups, salads or to your vegetable stir fries to add some crunch.




To make the batter:
1 scant cup of cake flour
1 cup of cold white beer
1 egg

Method:

Whisk the egg and beer until foamy. Then whisk in the flour for only a few seconds. Do not over mix.

Put the batter bowl inside a larger bowl with ice.

You can use this tempura batter to fry seafood, zucchini, eggplant, cauliflower, sweet potato, asparagus etc....







Miso Dressing:

3 Tbsp white miso paste
3 tsp Dijon  mustard
2 Tbsp dashi stock
2 Tbsp mirin
1 Tbsp rice vinegar
1 tsp fresh ground ginger
2 Tbsp canola oil
1 Tbsp sesame oil

Method:

Whisk the miso, mustard, mirin, vinegar, ground ginger until well combine. Then add the oils slowly and whisk until well incorporated.
Adjust the consistency of the dip with a little water if too thick.


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